Aikido & Aiki-Jujitsu

2 12 2011

First of all, I have no idea if there is something practiced for real as Aikido+Jujitsu (I did practice Aiki-Jutsu with the gifted master soke Yamaue and I loved his applications and inputs on the art!). I also know, even if never practiced, the art called Daitō-ryū Aiki-jūjutsu (大東流合気柔術), and I met people practicing it, and heard some discussions about this interesting martial art as well.

I am not trying to start a new definition or denomination of something!! “Aikido+Jujitsu” is just a name I gave in my mind to the Aikido form that it is practiced in Wuhan dojo. An Aikido form that for many aspects is closer to what I know (very little I admit) of Jujitsu. I mean, as wikipedia writes, Jujutsu, 柔術, the Japanese form, not the also interesting and more modern Brazilian form.

I met Jujitsu people especially in Norway and practiced a little with them in martial art events, like Aiki-jutsu soke Yamaue seminars or at Mandal martial art summer seminar, enjoying also their exhibition and various applications.

Aikido from Stavanger!

My idea of Jujitsu is a direct form of defensive/offensive martial art, practiced against any effective attack that is controlled and neutralized at once by the one performing the technique, usually locking the attacker of the ground after a series of joint

I know this is an extremely simplified vision. Anyway, it’s my vision! Enough for me for being quite fascinated and interested in Jujitsu.

Aikido, Jujitsu, Daitō-ryū Aiki-jūjutsu are closely related. In the early days o’Sensei Morihei
was teaching an Aikido form much closer to the other 2 arts mentioned. Much closer when confronted to today Aikido in Aikikai, I mean. Those early days where also the period when Kenji Tomiki was an active student of Aikido with o’Sensei. Tomiki took then another way and created Shodokan Aikido, that I have practiced and learnt some basics thanks to my dear friend and teacher Bob in Stavanger.

What I have learnt in Tomiki Aikido practice and tried to make mine in my “usual” days of Aikido practice is the awareness toward the attack and the principle of avoidance. I have practiced too little and I was never a good student, given my tendency to resort to Aikikai Aikido forms making my practice more a mix than clean Tomiki style.

I think I have managed to take some of the principles Bob tried to teach me, and at the same time sharing with him some of the other views of the Aikido I love. I managed in the second part, since together with Bob, we founded and started Stavanger Jūshinkan Aikido. I feel more “Tomiki oriented” when I practice Aikido forms closer to Jujitsu.

Now, back to my start, Wuhan Aikido club main instructor, Mr. Hu, 1.dan Aikikai, has an extensive knowledge of very effective locks that reminded me mostly of Aiki-Jutsu forms shown by soke Yamaue.

Black belts in Wuhan

After practicing now a few times in Wuhan I have come to the following thoughts:

* in Endo sensei, Yasuno sensei, Tissier sensei Aikido forms, in particular (but these are the shihans I know best, or I would like to know more right now!!), both tori and uke have a lot of “fun” during the technique, in the meaning they both are required to be active and present through the whole technique, establishing and maintaining the contact, kimusubi, and doing “something” to control or unbalance uke (kuzushi) or avoid to be unbalanced, for tori. My main feeling when practicing this Aikido, both as tori and uke, is always a good feeling! Happy and.. enjoying! And working hard, especially as uke! In fact, even limited by my poor physical condition, the seminars this year I have been more happy have been with Irie sensei and Endo
sensei in China; Tisser sensei and Yasuno sensei in Kyoto, Japan; Jorma Lyly sensei in Trondheim.. In Trondheim I was extra happy, but that was for being in Norway!!

* in this form of “Aikido+Jujitsu” only tori has most of the fun! Uke performs a good and effective attack and then.. he/she must only take care to react fast enough in order to not get injured by the technique execution!! I admit I enjoy to test myself in this Aikido form. It is always a challenge to remain relaxed enough for not suffering too much from effective locks, for being fast enough to have the body reacting in the proper way because of joint locks otherwise painful. I had two quite serious injures because my body was not fast enough: Masuda sensei in Hombu dojo, first night of 2008 tour, destroy my right wrist with sankyo, and it took more than 1 year to get better! Then with Philippe Orban sensei in Oslo maybe in 2009, when sensei applied a fast lock on my right elbow for an advanced version of shihonage (the one that locks all the arm by entering low and pushing the wrist upwards, locking completely from the elbow to shoulder) and the weight of my body injured the elbow joint (and I still suffer now and then..). The practice in Wuhan, more “warrior-like” Aikido, is helping in keeping this awareness, not only of what happens around me (for this, Endo sensei shomen uchi jiyu waza with multiple attackers is still the best exercise) but what happens inside me.

I don’t want now to dwell on the difficult ground of why one should practice Aikido: effectiveness or good time, because this is not what I mean. Only people that has never participated to an Endo
sensei seminar would think that his Aiki(do) is not effective! Also, I often ask myself and wonder if something has to be painful in order to be effective. I proposed this very question to some experienced students of an Aikido shihan sadly more famous for being very painful (and very effective) in his technique execution. I did not get any good answer (actually, they got quite pi$$ed with me!!).

(here like in any other post or thought or comment.. this is a blog, these are my opinions and at the end of the day, they counting jack$hit!)

As for me, I do what I like, and I like different things.. and I like to meet people and try different things! Then I decide what to keep and what to forget.. but first I want to see and try all I can! And learn and improve!

In fact, practice in Wuhan allowed me to meet amazing nice people and expand the kind of relationships that with Aikido are making my life much fuller..

..and tonight I’ll take the night train to Hangzhou, to practice with other special people I had the pleasure to meet thanks to Aikido..

(Note: I would have loved to provide more links especially to other blog post from my previous experience in Stavanger and else, but my blog is still blocked in China, I post by email and seldom check by a very slow sort of vpn method. And, I do not have much patience in general!!)



2 responses

6 12 2011

Aikido makes people happy! 😉


17 03 2012

I am living in Wuhan, in Brazl i practice Jiu jitsu for almost 6 months, here i dont have idea if there are teachers, can someone help me?




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